Yeasayer
All Hour Cymbals


4.5
superb

Review

by snydely USER (10 Reviews)
December 3rd, 2013 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Expertly fused noises from very different musical eras and areas, with a distinctive pop music influence to boot

With neo-psychedelic soundscapes that sound like they come from some futuristic Eastern European village, "All Hour Cymbals" is one of the most unique albums of the past ten years. Coming from seemingly nowhere, Yeasayer beautifully blend African and Asian styles to create the type of worldbeat sound popularized by Peter Gabriel and David Byrne before them. Truthfully, it could be seen as a revival of the genre though, as the six years since its release have proven, indie rock bands have not exactly jumped on the worldbeat bandwagon (as such a bandwagon hasn't really existed). But that only adds to the intrigue surrounding this album, which truly stands on its own in the music world.

For all intents and purposes, it's a mess. A mess of sitars, synthesizers, bongos, tribal harmonies, and whatever the hell else the Brooklyn-based Yeasayer decided to throw into the mix. But the final product is a mesmerizing success unlike anything that has become popular in recent years. It seems otherworldly at first listen despite being so rooted in this world. The first trio of tracks are the most talked-about on the album as well as perhaps the most accessible. They're plenty avant-garde, that can't be argued, but they certainly have roots in pop music as well, making for not one, not two, but three tribal pop whoppers that start off the album quite nicely.

The music, talked about heavily in this review, while phenomenally weird, is not the only thing that makes "All Hour Cymbals" so great or noteworthy. The lyrics are very well-written and have the sort of dystopian angst that is so odd but so fitting for this album. From '2080,' a track which made its rounds through the indie blogosphere in 2007, is especially impressive in terms of lyrical content and this line has to be my favorite: "I can't sleep when I think about the times we're living in/I can't sleep when I think about the future I was born into." Such a simple point, yet so poetically expressed. There is a cynical vibe to most of the lyrics on this album, with the only celebratory words being quite bittersweet in nature.

Every so often, an album comes along that is so radically different than anything else out there that it challenges what we as listeners know and perceive as musically "normal." Yeasayer take their geographically diverse influences and fuse them with more contemporary pop elements to make something sublimely original. Sounds from different areas and eras are effortlessly concocted in a way that would be an impressive for any artist, let alone a brand-new band on their debut album. Open your minds a little, let Yeasayer set up camp in your brains and allow them to absolutely blow you away.



Recent reviews by this author
Cloud Nothings Here and Nowhere ElseNew Order Power, Corruption and Lies
Baths ObsidianCage The Elephant Melophobia
Depeche Mode ViolatorDisclosure Settle
user ratings (243)
3.8
excellent


Comments:Add a Comment 
wacknizzle
December 3rd 2013


14538 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Really sweet album, nice review

sleepdirt
March 30th 2014


511 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The majority of this album nourishes my soul.

jtswope
November 30th 2016


5788 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is so addictive.

rabidfish
March 2nd 2017


6853 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

quite good, actually... Exotic instrumentation and varied influences, but not just for the sake of being international. Good songwriting most of the time.





Digging: HTRK - Rhinestones

FullOfSounds
March 2nd 2017


15793 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This looks awesome

JWT155
March 2nd 2017


14790 Comments


Their last record I consider one of the most underrated records from last year.

FullOfSounds
March 6th 2017


15793 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yep this is fantastic. The rhythms are so addictive

Lord(e)Po)))ts
March 6th 2017


67115 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Back when yeasayer was good

timbo8
March 5th 2018


630 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"Red Cave" gets me every time. So epic.

anat
June 12th 2019


4373 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Goodness me what a gem this is

Demon of the Fall
June 12th 2019


20574 Comments


I’ve heard this but couldn’t tell you what it sounds like now, I’m going to take an educated guess at ‘a bit like that Gang Gang record Saint Dymphna’... maybe not though.

Digging: Jesu - Jesu

DocSportello
December 8th 2020


1987 Comments


This band really fell off, but '2080' still gives me goosebumps in Dec. 2020

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
December 8th 2020


21556 Comments


“sunrise” is a classic opener

Colton
December 8th 2020


12261 Comments


holy shit forgot about this band. and yeah it is. Think I remember 2080 being my favourite though. Also really like their song from the Dark Was The Night compilation album (Tightrope I think it's called?)

SandwichBubble
December 8th 2020


13109 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I still haven't checked any of their other albums, shame on me.

And yeah, it was tightrope on that 4AD comp!

anat
December 9th 2020


4373 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

life was easier when one of us was deeeeee-e-e-e-e DEEEEAD

Toolbag
May 17th 2021


5499 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Awesome album

Digging: Deathspell Omega - The Synarchy of Molten Bones



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2019 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy